Free college raises questions

Many of us are seeking to graduate and get a college degree, whether it be an associates, bachelor’s, or master’s. But how great does having free community college sound? Or does it even sound that great to taxpayers at all?

Barack Obama’s free community college proposal mentions that students who want to be eligible for this program must be at least a part-time student and maintain a 2.5 GPA. But even though students are getting this money, are they willing to work towards it? The U.S. Department of Education calculates that only 18 percent of students who go to a two-year college graduate after three years, and that high rated community colleges are only at 30 to 40 percent, which doesn’t make it that much better.

Maybe school is not what students expect and it is just too much for them. Which students actually want it and which really need it?

Seward’s Director of Financial Aid Donna Fisher made a point about the difference between a want and a need. If students are given this money, are they still going to want more? When do we put a stop to it or do we continue to just give students more and more? Pell grants and state aid pay for a major parts of students’ finances at a community college. They are already being used to buy text books and help with dorm expenses.

Fisher said it all depended on the quality of life the student wanted.

Do we want to save our money or spend it eating out and going to the movies? In my opinion, I feel like a lot of students struggle with budgeting. When do we know when to stop spending and when to save? Fisher mentioned that Seward does offer several courses that can help students in order to help them improve, such as first year seminar and personal finance. Fisher did make a statement that these classes cannot hold a student accountable, though. It does all rely back on the person.

Fisher also talked a lot about how the money will come about to help these 9 million students. Fisher mentions that she has no idea where the money would come from besides the taxpayer’s pockets, and that she does not even know if there would be jobs after students graduate from college. No one is guaranteed a job after college. whether it be graduating from a university, or a community college.

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